These have been trying time for the Nashville Predators, losers of their last five games. There is one last chance for hope before the calendar changes.
I have watched long enough to know things can change. I have listened long enough to believe it’s true. Still, I am looking for a reason to believe. After injuries and poor play, the Nashville Predators have lost five straight games and fallen to second in the division. The recent play makes it hard to live without somebody else. The Tennessee Titans certainly did not help. (Good thing I am a longtime Colts fan!)
The good news is they are not out of time, even if we are out of our heads. The return of Viktor Arvidsson and P.K. Subban breathed life into the fanbase, but has not returned wanted results. The Predators have only gained 14 high-danger chances in their last three games while allowing 26. Not a great ratio.
There is one last chance for hope, and it is today. The Predators travel to Washington to take on the Capitals in a New Years’ Eve matinee. Nashville hopes their mom’s – who are on the trip this week – bring them a bit of luck. After losing six straight games and 10 consecutive on the road, the Predators need all the help they can get.
It won’t be easy. The Capitals sit atop the Metropolitan Division with 51 points on the season. Winning 9 of their last 10 games propelled does hurt. Of course, Alexander Ovechkin continues to be a top scoring, gaining 29 goals on the season already. Solid play from Nicklas Backstrom and John Carlson only adds more concern for the Predators.
The stats just don’t add up for the Nashville Predators. During 5v5 action, they are fifth in the league in CorsiFor, third best in goals allowed, and second in high-danger save percentage. Still, they are failing to score. In their last six games, they have lead shot-sharing metrics in five games, had more shots on goal in five games, but only earned more scoring chances in three games. As they did last season, the Predators are relying too much on Pekka Rinne to win the games. Their lapses on defense leave Rinne out to dry too many times. Thankfully, their goalie is up to the challenge more times than not.
There is one more chance today to end the streak that plagues the Nashville Predators. If they fail to earn two points today, it will not be a happy New Years’ Eve for fans.